by Jonathon Kimbrell September 21, 2016

So, you've got the food, you've got the tables and party favors, you've got your dealers and you are ready to throw a rippin' Vegas themed party. But, there is one crucial element that will make or break any party: the music.

It's a subtle art to making a monster playlist your guests will enjoy throughout the night. You've got to have the right blend of uptempo jams and slow dance numbers to keep the equilibrium intact. Of course, you'll probably know your clientele pretty well before going into this party, but if you aren't quite sure what music will get to the hearts and souls of your paying public, here are a few choice tunes to build your music party playlist around.

1). You're throwing a Vegas themed party, so you obviously have to have some Vegas themed tunes on your playlist. You have two obvious choices in this department: Elvis Presley's "Viva Las Vegas" and Frank Sinatra's "Luck Be A Lady." Both are classic choices for a reason and you'll roll a winner with either of these selections, for sure. But, if you want something just as classic and maybe a bit on the less obvious side, go with Elvis' "A Little Less Conversation" (original or the Junkie XL remixed version) along with Sinatra's "Isle of Capri." Your guests will thank you. If you need a little bit more of Vegas class in your playlist, nothing says 'Swing' more than the music stylings of Count Basie, Tony Bennett or Ella Fitzgerald. "I'm certain honey/that life would be sunny/with plenty of money and you!" Bet on these cats every time and you will never lose.

2). Continuing with the 'Vegas' theme and turning the volume knob up a notch or two, rock n' roll is alive and well, and lends itself well to a hellova rockin' good time. May we suggest the 1972 staple, "Tumbling Dice" by The Rolling Stones? "Don't you know you know the duece is still wild?" If you need your speakers to go to 11, Motorhead's "Ace Of Spades" is a top pick, too. Rock n' Roll ain't noise pollution, just so you know.

3). Chances are, you've got some Gen X'ers and Millenials at your party, so if Elvis, Sinatra and The Stones are a bit too old hat for their tastes (and shame on them if that is the case), throw in some bonafide 80s hits for good measure. Prince's "Let's Go Crazy" from his multi-platinum "Purple Rain" album is a sure fire hit to keep the kids excited. Heck, throw in Eddie Murphy's "Party All The Time" song for giggles and you can't go wrong. Double down with some Pet Shop Boys, Soft Cell, Duran Duran, Pat Benatar and Adam Ant if you are feeling a little on the nostalgic side.

4.) It's not a party unless you have some funk and soul in the house. Trust us. A good beat, a heavy bass line and some sweat pouring off your brow will keep the party going until the wee small hours. Really, anything by the Godfather of Soul himself, James Brown, is FDA Prime Choice, but may we suggest you definitely throwing on "Get On Up (Feel Like A Sex Machine)" to get the crowd pumped. Segue in Otis Redding or Sam Cooke's version of "Shake" and chase it with some neo-soul a la' Sharon Jones and The Dap-Kings and Charles Bradley and your party guests will thank you. 

5). Early rhythm and blues often lends itself well to party playlists, no matter the theme. If your DJ is spinning these gems on vinyl, they'll definitely get some bonus points with Big Joe Turner "Shake, Rattle & Roll", Little Richard's "Tutti Frutti"or Chuck Willis' version of "Keep A-Knockin'". You can't go wrong with too much oldies in your playlist, especially if you have plenty of old school cats having a blast at your shindig. 

6. Let's not discount some of the newer music coming out of today's speakers, shall we? Sprinkle in some modern hits like Gnarls Barley's "Crazy", or even The Black Keys' "Gold On The Ceiling," both hits produced by the amazing Danger Mouse, coincidentally, and you'll hear an amazing playlist come full circle.

7. Then, there is the finale. The party is winding down and you have a few stragglers hanging on past last call. Our favorite tracks to bring the evening to a close are Gene Autry's "Happy Trails" or "Hank Thompson's "A Six Pack To Go," classic and not-totally-campy songs that caps off a great night of partying and lets your customers know it is time for bed.

Jonathon Kimbrell
Jonathon Kimbrell


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